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Specialist production instructor

Teach a trade. Build a future.


Want to support people to learn new skills and help them improve their prospects? As a specialist production instructor, you’ll: 

  • run an on-site prison workshop, leading a team of prisoners 
  • develop prisoner’s skills and confidence, and possibly help them to assess accredited vocational qualifications 

We’ll rely on you and your team to ensure products are manufactured to the highest standards. The work you do with prisoners will have a lasting impact and offer some of the most unique challenges. There’s certainly potential for you to develop a rewarding career

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Things you need to know

As a specialist production instructor (Band 4), you’ll: 

  • supervise prisoners while maintaining safety and security in the workshop and prison
  • mentor, coach and assist prisoners to develop themselves and earn industry recognised qualifications for release, keeping their training records updated
  • manage costs, quality and timings throughout production
  • maintain a professional relationship with the prisoners which creates a safe environment to support them in their rehabilitation journey

Adrian Noel who runs the waste management and recycling department at HMP Featherstone

As part of our team, you’ll:

  • create a safe, decent and inclusive environment that supports prisoner rehabilitation
  • supervise, train and motivate prisoners in all aspects of the workshop
  • keep training records up to date and deliver vocational qualifications
  • set work schedules, manage targets and quality standards, and maintain delivery of contractual arrangements
  • follow all necessary security criteria of the prison or youth custody setting where you are based
  • complete administration activities to support the smooth running of the workshop
  • contribute to health and safety risk assessments and ensure the health and safety of those you are supervising

For each workshop, your responsibilities for what you will instruct will vary depending on the prison to which you are applying for.

Engineering workshops

Instruct manufacture of:

  • Double glazing windows
  • Computer Aided Design (CAD)
  • Machining (including CNC)
  • Powder coating systems
  • Sheet metal work
  • Welding and fabrication
  • Item repair & remanufacturing

Woodworking workshops

  • Woodwork machinery
  • Woodwork assembly
  • Woodwork finishing and spraying
  • Upholstery
  • Furniture repair and reuse

Printing workshops

  • Signage manufacturer
  • Lithograph printing
  • Digital printing
  • Heat press printing
  • Print finishing and binding
  • Desktop publishing

Waste management workshops

  • Working outdoors all year round, regardless of the weather
  • Updating the waste management monitoring system
  • Collecting, processing and disposing of waste materials
  • Liaising with contractors when ordering services, including skip collection

Horticulture workshops

  • Working outdoors all year round, regardless of the weather
  • Working with catering colleagues to develop, plan and provide fresh produce for the kitchens
  • Maintain the growing plant/crop to ensure optimum development and/or cropping
  • Maintain effective biological pest control measures and any necessary chemical crop protection programmes
  • Ensure produce grown on-site is prepared and packaged appropriately

Textiles workshops

Supervise the manufacture of:

  • Flatwork – sheets, towels, pillow slips, etc
  • Clothing, footwear and leather garments
  • Specialist items – Catering clothing, work wear, bags & holdalls, etc
  • Sewing machine repair and maintenance

Depending on the prison you apply to, and your skills, you may also instruct: 

  •  Braille 
  •  Cycle repair 
  •  Concrete manufacture 
  •  Remanufacture or refurbishment 
  •  Warehousing and operations 
  •  TV repair 
  •  Manufacturing Promotions
Region Prisons Band 3 Salary Band 4 Salary
Inner London Brixton, Pentonville, Wandsworth, Wormwood Scrubs £30,137 £35,987
Outer London Belmarsh, Downview, Feltham, High Down, Isis £28,636 £33,506
National All other prisons £25,572 £30,471


As part of the Civil Service Pension Scheme, you will receive a percentage of your salary based on your contributions and membership period for the pension scheme.

Annual leave:

You will receive 25 days paid annual leave, rising to 30 days after 10 years of service.

Civil Service benefits:

  • access to our cycle to work scheme
  • travel loans

To work as a specialist production instructor, you’ll need to:

  • mentor and coach prisoners to gain qualifications for release
  • be able to read drawings or plans and turn these into clear instructors
  • be able to motivate people and have some supervisory experience
  • have relevant work experience and vocational qualifications
  • hold knowledge and skills for your specialism 
  • have strong communication and influencing skills and a caring, resilient approach 
  • have a can- do attitude 
  • lead and work in a team

We welcome and encourage applications from everyone, regardless of their background. Find out more about how we champion diversity and inclusion in the workplace.

You’ll need to:

  • provide an anonymised format CV. This helps us recruit based on your knowledge and your skills, rather than your background, gender, or ethnicity to ensure the process is fair
  • ensure your CV includes details of any relevant qualifications and experience
  • provide and several short written statements in your application
  • answer questions which outline your experience – tell us about any previous roles you’ve had or, if you are a recent college leaver, your college experience

The Making the Civil Service a Great Place to Work for Veterans initiative includes a guaranteed interview scheme to those who meet the minimum criteria to provide eligible former members of the Armed Forces with opportunities to secure rewarding jobs. Allowing veterans to continue to serve their country, and to bring highly skilled individuals with a broad range of experience into the Civil Service in an environment, which recognises and values your previous service in the Armed Forces.

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If you want to start your career with meaning, click the button below to start the recruitment process.

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